Dear Menaul School Community,

As a father of five and a person who has dedicated my life to the care and education of children, like all Americans and sympathetic people everywhere, I am heartbroken at the events in Uvalde, Texas. There are few good words from my broken heart so I must pray. 

Prayer of empathy and mourning written by Nancy Blackman

Spirit, hear our hearts weep with you. Hold us up and be with us in our tears.

Selah

first it was 10

so bold and strong

living their days

grocery shopping at tops

but in you walked

hate spewing from your pores

taking lives one by one

who

why

what

a peyton gendon manifest

left dripping with hate

online for everyone

raw racism

you drove and drove

until you reached tops

strolling in with

gun-in-hand

who

why

what

and then came

19 children

2 adults

brought to death

in minutes flat

parents left without

families torn apart

who

why

what

an isolated loner

woke up one day

his salvador ramos anger

shelled out on grandma first

parents left crying

families left morning

who

why

what

As a steward and leader responsible for several hundred human beings, this event is a preparedness gut check.

Therefore, I am outlining recent upgrades we have made this year to protect our community. Here they are for your review. 

  1. We have added nine new cameras around campus (eight more planned for this summer) which the security guard monitors constantly from his Security House. We installed six high tech smart cameras four years ago. The new cameras have superior resolution and are more easily installed to cover the spaces we need. We are also making plans to add a drone camera which will make regular rounds on campus.
  2. In January, we added Rave alert system, a cutting-edge emergency communication app which allows teachers to alert police, fire, and health services as well as our community to an emergency from their phone. This allows us to go away from bells and classroom phones as communication devices. This system pinpoints to first responders where the issue is on campus and allows us to respond quickly for less urgent matters.
  3. We have extended our manned security hours into early evening. This helps us protect the physical campus until we close the gate after sports activities conclude.
  4. We continue to do fire, active shooter, and bomb threat drills each year – most frequently at the beginning of the school year.
  5. We continue to lean on our close supportive community as a way to hear about threats before they happen. We are blessed to know our students and families well which helps us know about and monitor any possible threat which frankly is rarely an issue.

Finally I have to admit that a response to this type of issue would be based on our police force’s preparedness to intervene. I expect any event in Albuquerque will be met with courage and professionalism.

Lindsey R. Gilbert, Jr., President and Head of School


Read on for family resources on school safety

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